C.G. Drews's Reviews > Heartstone

Heartstone by Elle Katharine White
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Mar 12, 2017

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bookshelves: 3-star, adult, retelling, read-2017, epic-fantasy, dragons

I have a small bit of "love/hate" for this book. Because, like DRAGONS. And they did the dragons so so well that I'm not only impressed, I'm a huge fan! We have dragon riders and battles and they kill evil monsters and like yaaaas. THIS IS EXACTLY THE KIND OF DRAGON STORY I WANT IN MY LIFE. But. Haha. The middle was so insufferably boring and a dead mushroom has more personality than Aliza. So. Those are rather large drawbacks.

Okay and I confess! I've never read Pride and Prejudice. This is mostly because I can't spell "prejudice" without spellcheck and also stabbing myself in the eye with a spork sounds more appealing than a period drama. But I have seen the Lizzie Bennet Diaries vlogs and they're hilarious and great! So I had a good idea of the basic gist of the story. So I thought it was a good retelling and very entertaining in that respect! What I reeeeally liked was how there were women warriors and dragon riders and monsters slayers!! So yes the world is still sexist and marriage is still the #1 goal for most of the women....buuuuuuut WOMEN WERE STILL OUT THERE DOING COOL STUFF.

Now Aliza. Oh dear dear Aliza. You know that song "there's a hole in my bucket, dear Liza, dear Liza, there's a hole in my bucket, dear Liza, todayyyyyy". Heard of it? Please? I hope so? it's like some folk tune or something. BUT MOVING FORWARD: there's a hole in Aliza's bucket and her personality fell out. Like, dude. She paints and she likes to heal things with herbs. But other than that she is so passive a potato could've done the polka before her and she would have just smiled demurely. I kind of cannot even with her. Although I was really impressed that she DIDN'T need a man to save her and she was also a woman of colour.

I did like Darcy! Erm...I mean Daired. He was awkward and kinda dumb and quite cute by the end. I think he would've been 10 x more interesting if he hadn't of followed this method of romance:

Daired: [DON'T LOOK AT HER]
Daired: [DON'T SPEAK TO HER UNLESS YOU HAVE TO ASK TO PASS THE POTATOES]
Daired: [TELL HER YOUR DRAGON LIKES HER]
Daired: [BUT DON'T MAKE EYE CONTACT]
Daired: Erm so Aliza...will you marry me. I've been in love with you for months.
Aliza: WTF MAN NO.


That is a true and accurate depiction of the romance. Which I assume is like the original so I can't complain?? But it's still kind of laughably dumb okay?!? Like there is NO chemistry, NO connection, NO CONVERSATION...until he's suddenly asking her to marry him. It did get better thank goodness and Aliza wasn't an air-headed fluffball who's whole life was just on pause till a maaaaan came for her. But dude. Let's talk about the definition of love.

Hey but at least I was amused! Even when the romance was going terribly, I thought it was HYSTERICAL. Obviously the appropriate reaction, right?

And so much monster killing!! LIKE. The dragons really feature in the first half and people get sliced and burned and they take down evil griffins and yaaas. Unfortunately that just DROPPED OUT about 40% in and didn't retake until the last 10%. So do you know what I'm calling that middle bit of the book? FRIKKIN' BORING, MATE. They have tea. Visit a pregnant friend. Comment on the lilies in the fields. Take more tea. Aliza continues to be as interesting as that speck of dust on the carpet. I took 9 naps and waited for the dragons to come back. And when they did come back THEY DELIVERED, so it was worth it. But duuuuude. so. bored.

ALL IN ALL: I liked the secondary characters very much so and I adored the dragon scenes. I just can't look passed the fact that the middle was so tedious and Aliza was an absolute void. Excuse me. But I honestly think ALL classics should be retold with dragons, and if someone doesn't write me Black Beauty but with dragons instead of horses and Huckleberry Finn where he is a dragon changeling -- then, YA KNOW, I'M JUST GOING TO BE SITTING HERE WAITING. I did enjoy this book! I just didn't fall in love with it like I was hoping to. Definitely recommend if if you like dragons or period dramas or a romance that's so awkward you ship it because the awkward levels are actually admirable.
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Reading Progress

March 11, 2017 – Started Reading
March 11, 2017 – Shelved
March 11, 2017 –
page 158
44.89% "I know this is a Pride and Prejudice retelling...but does it matter I've never read the original??? I SAW THE YOUTUBE VLOG SERIES THAT COUNTS RIGHT."
March 12, 2017 –
page 225
63.92% ""I just told you I love you!"
"You don't even know me!"


AT LAST WE HEAR SOME SENSE."
March 12, 2017 – Shelved as: 3-star
March 12, 2017 – Shelved as: adult
March 12, 2017 – Shelved as: retelling
March 12, 2017 – Shelved as: read-2017
March 12, 2017 – Shelved as: epic-fantasy
March 12, 2017 – Shelved as: dragons
March 12, 2017 – Finished Reading

Comments (showing 1-13 of 13) (13 new)

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message 1: by Penelope (new)

Penelope Uhm everybody loves Pride and Prejudice but meh in my opinion it's okay. That's all.

Great review!


C.G. Drews @Penelope: thanks! I have no interest in reading the original P&P honestly. XD


message 3: by Tracey (new) - added it

Tracey Dyck I do, in fact, know that song. "Then fix it, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry..." I'm ridiculously happy to hear that silly thing can be found in Australia too! But YES let's retell everything with dragons!


C.G. Drews @Tracey: OH GOOD. Someone gets my obscure folksong reference hahaah.


Nastassja Ahaha, in the original P&P Darcy is kind of a jerk too, and the marriage proposal was kind of after similar not looking or talking and then, Marry me, love, haha, though, it's still one of my fav (the original). As for this one, I'd be happy with dumb Daired if there was any chemistry at all!! It was so boring to read about characters' interactions without feeling them :/

Awesome review, Cait!


C.G. Drews @Nastassja: I know right?!? I was waiting for the chemistry but yet...no. I kind of think it was because Aliza had no personality? XD ;_;


message 7: by La Coccinelle (new)

La Coccinelle The romance sounds pretty much like it did in P&P. Everybody goes around hiding their feelings and acting all proud and prejudiced... and then they go confessing their love. In real life (today, anyway), people would be pretty blindsided by that if communication skills were so lacking...


Nastassja Cait (Paper Fury) wrote: "@Nastassja: I know right?!? I was waiting for the chemistry but yet...no. I kind of think it was because Aliza had no personality? XD ;_;"

Aliza and the rest of the characters. I guess, the only creatures who had any where dragons :P


message 9: by Erika (new)

Erika I love Pride and Prejudice and I ADORE dragons (heck, I wrote a book about one). I'm torn- your review has me intrigued, but that middle section sounds dastardly dull...

What to do, what to do?


message 10: by H.A. (new)

H.A. Titus Sooooo...now I want to write Huckleberry Finn where he's a changeling dragon. XD
Great review! I'll probably at least check this book out because I mildly enjoyed the original Pride & Prejudice and LOVED Pride, Prejudice, and Zombies, so. :)


message 11: by Yuri (new) - rated it 3 stars

Yuri I love P&P (well, Jane Austen's work...actually, my favorite is Emma...anyway), and I just started reading this mostly because the other book I was reading got boring and I wanted an interim fluff piece (also, I think I have a mild concussion). So while I can't yet contribute an informed opinion, I just found your review hilarious (in particular, the song part, lol). I also love dragons in novels, but I feel they've gone the way of dragon tattoos (which I admit to having): cool at first but now overdone, poorly done, and somewhat of a deus ex machina for bad writing. What Twilight did to vampires but more slowly, like dying of consumption as opposed to being run over by an glittering elephant.

Though I now want to write a draconic retelling of a classic just for you. Fun review!


Cloud I agree with you, I now want ALL the classics retold with dragons. Please and thank you!


message 13: by Mary (new) - rated it 3 stars

Mary Rowe Oh dear. You’re so harsh on Aliza! She was calm, steadfast and focused, self-confident and did what was necessary at the time. I found her quite tolerable.


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